Trophy hunting Companies are increasingly targetting children, offering ‘family hunts’, ‘father and son’ bonding experiences, their desperation to find new audiences for their killing game business is damaging to children and human society as well as the animals themselves.

The links between early cruelty to animals and later violent and aggressive crime have been documented for decades, and suspected by some for even longer. But now academic research has uncovered wider chilling evidence of the psychological effect on children of witnessing cruelty to animals, and prompted widespread efforts to step in and halt those at risk of escalating the trauma by acting it out against both animals and people.

Independent newspaper article

Malcolm Plant, the author of a peer-reviewed paper on the subject, Making the Link, says that put together, Romania’s street dog culling, violence rates and the study’s findings demonstrate a clear point: witnessing brutality to animals desensitises young people and makes them prone to aggression for life. “It’s highly likely that an animal abuser will also be abusing humans. We found not only have most animal abusers been exposed to violence and abuse, but that this has resulted in reduced empathy and a normalisation of aggression,” he says.

Read more Malcolm Plant’s research

Hidden in sight

When children witness violence, either of animals or people many studies show they are more likely to commit violence later in life. This isn’t just academic research or Netflix, this is reality.

Mark Randell, Hidden in Sight

Professional training and support on reporting and recognising animal abuse from Hidden In Sight. Recognise #TheLink between animal abuse and human abuse

Find out more about #TheLink

Empathy, a natural response to the suffering of others
The opposite of empathy, the vile celebration of the killing of a baited leopard in its native habitat, from a group of men in a hunting blind.
A Fantastic Initiative from these Schoolchildren #DontKillForFun